The reading teacher was found two days later.

He was about fifty years old, with a beard, skinny cheeks, and a somewhat grave expression.
A glance at him reminded Meng Huan of the fear of being dominated by his class teacher in senior high school.

Fengzhi whispered, “The teacher’s name is Shan Shu.
He is the residence’s Master Qingke, with a very high academic level.
He took the examination many years ago and came out as Tanhua–Lang*.
He is still an official until now.”

*Tanhua: a candidate who came third in the Hanlin examination.

*-Lang: prefix for minister or official.

“Tanghua-Lang?” Meng Huan was a bit puzzled.
“Isn’t it a waste to teach me with such a high academic knowledge?” He had calculated. Jinshi* in ancient times was equivalent to the provincial top scorer in the college entrance exam, and Tanghua-Lang could be considered the national top scorer.
He was slightly doubtful.
“Not to mention that only five taels of silver are given every month.”

*Jinshi: successful candidate in the highest imperial civil service examination.

Fengzhi: “Maybe we are lucky.”


Meng Huan was about to say something else when the teacher coughed.
“Madam, please.”


Meng Huan approached and sat down.
The teacher said with eyes closed, “The teaching materials for a child’s education are <>, <>, <>, <>, <>, and <>.
Which book does Madam consider to be suitable to start learning from?”

Yesterday, Meng Huan also ordered someone to buy some literacy books.
He flipped out a copy of <>.
“Teacher, this textbook has pictures; why don’t we learn this one?”

Shan Shu took a look at it.

Each word in this book had corresponding pictures— sun, moon, mountains, rivers, clouds, rain, thunder, and lightning— to help one understand.
Still, the overall number of words was small, only about three hundred, and it was usually for young children.

Meng Huan picked it for precisely this reason: for elementary school students, it’s a bit childish; but for myself, who just started college, it’s just right.

Meng Huan: ^v^

“Madam can learn this one if he wants to.” Shan Shu picked up a ruler and turned over the paper before him.
“This old man will first teach you to read it once.
After that, Madam will recite it.”


Meng Huan hurriedly marked the homophones with similar pinyin on the side to remember how to read them.

After teaching him how to pronounce them, Shan Shu withdrew the ruler and closed his eyes.
“Madam, memorize the first two pages and then write them from memory after one hour.
If you can’t write it, you will be beaten ten times on the palm for one wrong word.”


Have to be beaten on the palm?

What, ah? I am the prince’s wife…… he chanted silently in his heart, but Meng Huan feared teachers growing up.
His scalp was tense when he heard these words, and he felt breathless.
He hurriedly lowered his head to sweep the two pages over.

The first page was fine, as most words were similar to the current simplified Chinese characters.
However, the second page was slightly unfamiliar and significantly more difficult, although most radicals were similar.

Meng Huan took a deep breath, picked up the brush, and wrote them down on the draft paper.

The weather was hot.
The maids did not dare to approach him during the lesson but came over occasionally to refill the tea.
Meng Huan’s forehead was full of sweat as he wrote.
When he looked up, he found that Teacher Shan Shu was sleeping with his head tilted in a crooked chair.



He didn’t know what to say.

— Only his suffering of transmigrating had been accomplished.

The sundial’s shadow moved slowly, catching up to an hour of memorizing.
Meng Huan relaxed and examined the little old man lazing and sleeping before him.

Truly knows how to laze around.
Having just thought so, the little old man opened his eyes and yawned, “Has Madam memorized them?”

“…… I have memorized them.” Meng Huan took out the dictation’s draft paper.

“Now write them down.”

The palanquin that picked up Lin Bozhou stopped at the prince’s residence’s gate.
Lin Bozhou lifted the hem of his crimson-colored mangpao*, stepped on the stool padded by the servants, and steadily stepped onto the stone surface.

*Mangpao: official robe worn by ministers.

“Your Highness has returned to the residence?” Shan Xing and the Great Eunuch, You Jin, were waiting at the door and familiarly welcomed him in.
“Have some tea, Your Highness.”

This was a rule when Lin Bozhou returned to his residence—a sip of hot tea in winter and cold tea in summer to clear the mind.

“Your Highness left the court so early today?” Shan Xing followed behind him.

“There were some unpleasant things.
I dealt with a governor sometime ago, and now the court is flaring with discussion.
The Qingliu Party has been kowtowing to admonish the emperor again.
Although it was useless, it was noisy.” Lin Bozhou returned the teacup to the Great Eunuch You Jin’s hand.
“This prince had heard it until his ears got calloused, so he came back first.”

“Did they create trouble?” Shan Xing looked a little worried.

Lin Bozhou had a basis for killing people, but the court was full of people and factions, making it worse.
Not everyone understood his thoughts, preferring to think about their interests.

Unsurprisingly, Lin Bozhou was sprayed again today.

“They can’t make any trouble.”

Lin Bozhou’s voice was flat, and as he walked, his footsteps lurched.
“Where is Madam?”

“Madam?” Shan Xing thought momentarily.
“My father hasn’t returned yet.
Madam should still be studying.”

“It’s getting dark.” Lin Bozhou glanced at the sky.

“So late?” Shan Xing slapped his head.
“Then Madam is probably kept behind after class by my father.
Your Highness is aware of my father’s temperament in teaching.
No matter how smart a person is, they will suffer from his ruler.
Hold on.
If it’s Madam—”

The atmosphere suddenly became a bit silent.

Lin Bozhou glanced at him.

Shan Xing immediately shifted the blame.
“The suggestion of finding my father to teach him to read and write was not mine, right? It wasn’t.”


Lin Bozhou was too lazy to argue with him and said, “Go take a look.”

In the courtyard, the sun was getting darker.
Meng Huan slumped on the table and wrote with a brush.
His snow-white face was wilted and dejected, but his expression was stoic and strong.

In front of him, the stern-faced Shan Shu held a ruler and looked down at the inked paper on the table, looking grave.

The maid under the eaves, Fengzhi, gulped and gossiped with A-Qing.
“Madam still hasn’t memorized ah?”

“It seems that there are two wrong words again.
Shall we learn them another day? It’s so late; it’s time to prepare dinner.”

“Why don’t you suggest to Master Shan Shu that we finish school today and learn tomorrow?”

“…… Why don’t you go?”

The two maids muttered and turned around to go to the kitchen.

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